Issues on J-SOX: A Comparative Study June 2008 Sadakazu Osaki

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Issues on J-SOX:
A Comparative Study
June 2008
Sadakazu Osaki
Head of Research, Center for Knowledge Exchange
and Creation, Nomura Research Institute
Visiting Professor, University of Tokyo Law School
1
An Overview
„
2006 amendments of the SEL (now FIEL) included
following provisions.
„
„
„
„
Listed companies shall submit reports evaluating their
internal control over financial reporting (Art. 24-4-4 FIEL).
The reports shall be audited by independent auditors or
auditing firms (Art. 193-2 FIEL).
Listed companies shall certify appropriateness of their
annual reports (Art. 24-4-2 FIEL).
The provisions became effective on September 30,
2007.
„
The first internal control report will appear in June 2009,
evaluating its effectiveness as of the end of March 2009.
2
J-SOX?
„
„
These provisions are commonly referred to as J-SOX.
However, the amendments did not simply follow SOX
model.
„
„
The discussion led to the amendments started in 2005, after
SEIBU Railway Co. had been delisted from TSE.
The discussion took criticism against US SOX into
account, and tried to simplify the system.
„
„
„
Importance of top down, risk-based approach is emphasized.
Criteria for evaluation of effectiveness are simplified
(effective, with a deficiency, material weakness).
Detailed guidelines (Standard for Implementation) were
adopted before the law took effect.
3
Problems in Implementation
„
„
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Some accounting firms and consulting firms urged
listed companies to prepare “set of three documents”
(business manual, business flow chart, risk control
matrix) for every business process.
Even small or medium sized listed companies believe
they must set up an independent body such as
“Internal Audit Department” within their organization.
Large costs associated with a preparation for internal
control reporting let some private companies
postpone their IPOs.
4
Stalled IPO Market
Number of IPOs in Venture oriented Makets
TSE Mothers
Jasdaq
Hercules
others
1999
2
73
-
0
75
2000
27
97
40
0
164
2001
7
98
43
2
150
2002
8
70
24
0
102
2003
31
63
11
1
106
2004
56
71
18
7
152
2005
36
68
22
16
142
2006
41
59
38
21
159
2007
23
54
28
9
114
2008(~June)
8
9
3
2
22
1999~2007
239
662
227
58
1,186
Listed Co. as
the end of 2007
198
979
172
54
1,403
note: Others means Centrex in Nagoya, Ambitious in Sapporo, and Q-Board in Fukuoka
5
Efforts by the FSA
„
„
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In March 2008 the FSA published “11
Misunderstandings on Internal Control
Reporting System”.
The document emphasizes the difference
between US and Japanese system,
importance of flexibility in implementation,
etc.
The FSA urge accountants not to be too
defensive when they are consulted by the
listed companies.
6
Remaining Issues
„
How would Japanese investors react when a listed
company reports “material weakness” in its internal
control?
„
„
Is internal control reporting system really effective
for preventing accounting frauds?
„
„
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TSE made clear that material weakness would not directly
lead to the delisting of the company.
Number of accounting fraud cases is increasing, especially
among smaller listed companies.
Some investors may argue that strict system is needed for
Mothers companies rather than for Toyota Motors.
Is principles behind the regulation understood,
although the rule itself is followed rigidly?
7
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